Scarecrow, haunted house tours will follow PumpkinFest

WESTFIELD — The Westfield on Weekends PumpkinFest is back in-person this year on Oct. 16, but for those looking to extend the event, the drive-by Haunted House and Scarecrow Trail tours offer fall fun through Oct. 31.

“Last year, we organized the drive-by Haunted House Tour because of the pandemic and it was so popular, we are bringing it back this year,” said PumpkinFest co-chair Jason Polan. “In 2020 the map had thousands of views and hundreds participated in the tour.”

The Scarecrow Trail was created several years ago and remains a fun and popular activity for families and businesses.

This hard-working scarecrow couple on Moseley Avenue greeted visitors with mops and brooms for the 2020 Scarecrow Tour. (HOPE E. TREMBLAY/THE WESTFIELD NEWS)

Westfield on Weekends President Bob Plasse said anyone who had a scarecrow last year and saved it can join the trail again this year. For those who need a scarecrow, Plasse said the PVC pipe frame kits are available for $20 at Amelia Park now, or participants can make their own.

“We will also have a scarecrow tent at PumpkinFest for anyone who would like to purchase and make their scarecrow on site, or take home a kit,” said Plasse. “Business and individuals who want to participate but don’t have the time to create a scarecrow can contact the Westfield on Weekends Facebook page to purchase a dressed scarecrow.”

To join either — or both — self-guided tours, contact Westfield on Weekends via Facebook or at www.westfieldonweekends.com. An online interactive map sponsored by Witalisz & Associates will be updated regularly so that families can take the tours at their leisure beginning Oct. 16. There is no fee to participate and fan favorites will be determined for prizes via social media.

Heather Witalisz said participants in the tours should upload a photo of their scarecrow or house — with their address so folks can see it in person — to the PumpkinFest Facebook page. Viewers vote on their favorite by “liking” it, and prizes will be awarded for the top three photos.

“We really hope people will drive by the houses and follow the Scarecrow Trail and see these creative displays in person,” said Polan. “It’s a lot of fun, and many families took multiple trips last year to take it all in over the course of the two weeks the tours are up.”

This year, in addition to the online map which can be accessed through westfieldonweekends.com, a printed list of homes on the tour will be available at The Tavern Restaurant at 2 Broad St. the week of PumpkinFest.

Plasse said this year’s PumpkinFest will be bigger, and better, than ever.

“We have a new location this year in the field behind Westfield Middle School by Amelia Park and the Boys & Girls Club,” Plasse said. “This allows for more activities and we have packed in a lot of family fun.”

This year’s PumpkinFest includes a Trunk or Treat sponsored by All Stars Dance Center, the Westfield Gas & Electric Big Rig Rally, more than 100 vendors organized by Western Mass. Shop Local, pumpkin carving and decorating thanks to Big Y, the Greater Westfield Boys & Girls Club and local Boy Scouts, food trucks, children’s activities, live performances all day including the Kategory Five concert at 2 p.m., a raffle with more than 150 prizes and more. Major sponsors are Baystate Health, bankESB, Westfield Gas & Electric/Whip City Fiber, PeoplesBank and Ascent Dental.

“We could not host this free event without generous support from sponsors and the community, including the Westfield Police, Public Works, Westfield High National Honor Society and Circle K Club,” said Plasse.

PumpkinFest will run 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 16, at 21 S. Broad St., Westfield. Admission is free.

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